LG FB164 Micro Hi-Fi

Much of the current crop of consumer electronics seem to stage a visual assault. If something evokes sophistication, is clad in an eye-catching hue and/or looks like it took off a considerable chunk from your monthly paycheck, then it'll definitely be sold in record time. However, many people forget that when it comes to electronics, other senses need to be paid attention to as well – great eye candy won't count for anything if paired with substandard audio quality! The LG FB164 audio system plays the role of boisterous middleman for all of your audio/visual toys, earning pogi points in some aspects and faltering in others.

This system bucks the trend when it comes to size, coming in a slightly heftier form compared to its counterparts. It does keep to the proven black-and-blue color scheme, with LG employing its AQUA Lighting feature to great effect for the front portion of the main unit.

Ditching the supplied remote control, and pressing the buttons on the unit would make the blue light react by fading in various directions and illuminating again (which gives it another point for visuals). It may be tempting to do this all day long, but you'll end up giving the FB164 a healthy dose of fingerprint marks due to the glossy exterior coating on the entire system.

We all love to complain about gadgets and electronics that double as fingerprint magnets, but LG managed to shut us up temporarily by providing a microfiber cleaning cloth with the test unit.

Besides the mini-light show, the FB164 has everything you'll need for your audio-visuals. The top portion houses the iPod dock (covered by a sliding panel); the Power, Function, USB Direct Recording, and Eject buttons; a USB port for your other media devices; and a CD slot.

The bottom part holds buttons for the EQ/Demo, Clock, Timer, and Set functions, along with 3.5mm jacks for portable devices and headphones. The 2 3-way speakers (woofers and tweeters at the front and subwoofers on the side) make sure that the FB164 effectively fills a room with your tunes, and the unit's rounded corners set it apart from the boxy and staid sound systems of old.

Setting the system up is easy-peasey. The user guide will walk clueless consumers through the short process, and the FB164 will be up and running in no time. You can hook your TV up to the unit through component cables, and the supplied speaker cables, video cable, and AM/FM aerials will take care of the other aspects.

Our audio files were blasted out through the speakers with good treble and booming bass. Of course, non-bassheads can go for different sound modes that fit their own preferences, but we wish this system came with more modes to choose from. We didn't have to max out the volume level either; this unit spewed out sound that was loud enough at levels 8-10, and going higher would mess up the sound quality, get us complaints from our neighbors, or make our ears bleed, whichever comes first.

Besides the slight bulkiness, huge attraction to fingerprints, limited number of sound modes, and the lack of ability to tweak the existing modes to suit your tastes, the FB164 also falls short when it comes to the main unit's display. While putting your iPod on the dock enables you to charge it and listen to your media library at the same time, the display doesn't show any artist/song information, and switching playlists, albums, and compilations have to be done manually. It's a negligible downside that can be rectified on future models to satisfy most consumers who are already spoilt for choice.

Regardless, those who want a good hi-fi audio system or are looking for a worthy addition to their home entertainment rigs should consider the LG FB164.

Click here to see the LG FB164 in the Buyer's Guide.

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  • Plenty of playback options
  • USB direct recording function
  • Great audio quality from high ranges to bass
  • Fingerprint magnet
  • Basic display
  • Bigger compared to other hi-fi systems
Bottom Line

Has all the highs and lows covered quite nicely

Editor's Pick No
Price P12,990
Tech Specs
  • Input/Output:
    • 3.5mm Audio Out/Headphone Jack
    • Audio In – Portable In
    • Video Out – Composite/Component
    • Left/Right Speakers
    • Audio In – Digital (Optical)
    • USB 2.0
    • †iPod
  • Sound Modes
    • EQ Master – Normal
    • EQ Master – Pop
    • EQ Master – Classic
    • EQ Master – Rock
    • EQ Master – Jazz
    • EQ Master – Auto EQ
    • EQ Master – Natural EQ
    • XDSS Plus – XDSS
    • XDSS Plus – mp3 Optimizer
  • Supported Discs
    • DVD-RW (Video/VR and Video modes)
    • CD
    • CD-R and CD-RW
    • MP3 CD
    • WMA CD
  • DivX and Dolby Digital playback
  • Size
    • Main: 175 x 269 x 290mm
    • Front speaker: 132 x 314 x 266mm

1 of 8 photos
LG FB164 01

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